Family Fun near Downtown Minneapolis

Minneapolis Family FunMinneapolis, Minnesota is rich in history as well as outdoor and cultural activities. Here are a few family fun activities you can enjoy in the Minneapolis area:

The Minneapolis Zoo, about fifteen miles from downtown Minneapolis, provides families the chance to view over 2,000 animals and birds. It includes tropical and aquatic areas as well as a section that specifically highlights local animals. Although hiking the zoo trails is a great way to get exercise, visitors can also enjoy a ride on a monorail to get a view of the zoo from a higher elevation. In the warmer months, kids will enjoy the zoo’s splash pad and also wagon rides at the barnyard.

Another great location for animal enthusiasts is the Underwater Adventures Aquarium in nearby Bloomington. A moving sidewalk provides quick, easy access through a tunnel where families can get close-up looks at all kinds of sea creatures. The aquarium also provides a behind the scenes tour.

If your family loves books, you’ll want to head for Wild Rumpus, an independent children’s bookstore decorated with themes from Where the Wild Things Are, the classic picture book that inspired its name. In addition to new books, the store also sells gently used secondhand books. Their free weekly story time hours fill up quickly. Kids and their parents will also enjoy the small, live animals located throughout the store in cages.

Book loving families can also take note of the programs for children at the Minneapolis Central Library. They regularly schedule story hours and children’s films.

If shopping is a favorite family pastime, you’ll find plenty of malls in the area, including the huge Mall of America. Many of the malls have indoor play areas, and most kids won’t want to pass up the big lego store at Mall of America. The Mall, of course, also had plenty of places to enjoy a family-friendly lunch or dinner.

For a bit of Minnesota history, try the Mill City Museum, an historical landmark in the Riverfront district. Kids will enjoy riding on the Flour Tower elevator while they learn about the flour milling history of the city. The museum also provides fun activities for kids in their Baking and Water Labs.

Also in the Riverfront district is the renowned Children’s Theatre Company which regularly stages family-friendly shows and plays.

For another fascinating peek at Minneapolis history, families can schedule a ride with Padelford Mississippi Riverboat Tours. The tours start near the science museum.